12,000

We have over 12,000 students, from over 100 countries, within one of the safest campuses in the UK

93%

93% of Lancaster students go into work or further study within six months of graduating

Home > Research > Publications & Outputs > Modeling and interpreting element ratios in wat...
View graph of relations

« Back

Modeling and interpreting element ratios in water and sediments: A sensitivity analysis of post-Chernobyl Ru : Cs ratios.

Research output: Contribution to journalJournal article

Published

Journal publication date1995
JournalLimnology and Oceanography
Journal number7
Volume40
Number of pages8
Pages1302-1309
Original languageEnglish

Abstract

When elements are simultaneously added to lakes, experimentally or by accident, their ratios in the water phase and in bottom sediments can change with time due to differential partitioning between solution and suspended particles or sediments. A number of equations are developed to show the change of ratio with time in water and sediments assuming simultaneous pulse inputs followed by a range of combinations of loss processes from solution (i.e. hydraulic losses, sorption to particles followed by settling, and diffusion into the sediments). The pattern of events is discussed both for pulse events with specific limiting assumptions and for combined continuous and pulse inputs. The models show that elemental ratios in sediments are generally less sensitive indicators of differential partitioning than are elemental ratios in water. For lakes with long residence times, the long-term elemental ratio in the sediments does not differ from that in the initial spike to the water column, but for short residence times, it is directly dependent on the ratio of either partition or diffusion coefficients. The models are used to interpret Ru : Cs ratios measured in the water and sediments of Esthwaite Water subsequent to the pulse input of Chernobyl fallout. The ratios can be explained by assuming nuclides were lost either by flushing and sorption or by flushing, sorption, and diffusion. The process combination of flushing and diffusion is incompatible with the observed constant ratios.

Bibliographic note

Copyright, 2002 by the American Society of Limnology and Oceanography, Inc.